According to Dan Wetzel of Yahoo Sports, the three face potentially long sentences.
“If standard practices are applied, the three UCLA basketball players – including LiAngelo Ball – arrested Tuesday in mainland China under suspicion of shoplifting face between three and 10 years in prison if convicted, according a lawyer familiar with Chinese law who communicated with Yahoo on the condition of anonymity because he doesn’t want to speak out about the Chinese government.”
Wetzel also cited William Nee, “a Hong Kong-based researcher of the Chinese court system for Amnesty International.” According to Nee, “The three men could even be detained for more than a month without American-style bail before local prosecutors even decide whether to press charges.”
This is certainly a very serious matter that Ball, and for teammates Cody Riley and Jalen Hill face. Nee did present one bit of hope for the trio, though.
“I would say they could be in quite a bit of trouble if they have solid proof that they shoplifted,” Nee told Yahoo Sports, per Wetzel. “However, part of it will depend on whether their lawyers, the university, or the U.S. consulate can advocate and negotiate on their behalf.”
Ball has been very much in the news over the last year. This has largely been due to his outspoken father, LaVar, his older brother, Lonzo, and his younger brother, LaMelo. This is certainly an issue that’s new to the Ball family.